Killington Ski Resort is the largest in the eastern United States. Located near the town of Killington Vermont, Killington Ski Area is massive, with over 200 trails and 30 lifts spread across six interconnected peaks and a seventh noncontiguous mountain just a few miles away.
Killington Ski Resort opened for business in December 1958, just as Vermont skiing was gaining popularity. Rising to 4,241 feet, Killington Peak (or Killington Mountain) is the second highest mountain in Vermont. The area receives a good heaping of natural snow every year, but Killington Ski Resort owes much of its success to its innovative use of artificial snowmaking. One of the first mountains to adopt this technology in the 1960s, Killington Mountain has an impressive 60 miles of trails covered using artificial snowmakers. This has enabled people to ski Killington as early as the first week in October and as late as June (most seasons run from late October to May).
With over 90 miles of trails, Killington Ski Area offers terrain for every level of skier. You could ski Killington for weeks and still not cover all the trails. Indeed, with a vertical drop of over 3,000 feet, a single run on Killington Mountain might take hours. If possible, it is best to get a multi-day pass to the mountain and stay in one of the many Killington hotels or get a Vermont vacation rental. If your time is limited, pick the base camp that best suits your abilities and explore the mountain from there.
The trails from Snowshed base have the best Killington skiing for adult beginners; Ramshead base is best for children. Bear Mountain is the ideal place for snowboarding or extreme Killington skiing: there are several terrain parks, some great tree runs, and the famous double-black-diamond Outer Limits, the steepest mogul field on the East Coast. K-1 Lodge provides the quickest access to the expert terrain on Killington Mountain (via the highest Gondola in Vermont) and has the best après ski scene at Killington Ski Area.
Killington skiing is perhaps the best on the East Coast;
in ideal conditions, it rivals the Rocky
Mountain resorts. But the crowds and lively atmosphere
of Killington Ski Resort will not be for everyone. Pico
Peak, formerly an independent resort but now part of Killington
Ski Area, provides the perfect balance of modern amenities
and down-to-earth atmosphere. Runs vary from beginner
to expert, but advanced skiers favor Pico for its glades
and challenging summit runs. The Last Run bar at the base
is a comfortable and authentic Vermont ski lodge.
Ticket prices at Killington are increasingly expensive and Killington hotels can be pricey during peak season. You should expect to pay over $70 for a single day pass at the resort, but a savvy traveler can ski Killington without breaking the bank. Passes at the beginning and end of the season are substantially cheaper and there are discounts for multi-day passes. You can often find package deals combining tickets and accommodation. Several area ski stores and Vermont inns also offer reduced-price tickets. Killington Ski Resort’s website has some deals and ski packages, these are especially good if you want to rent equipment or sign up for ski or snowboard classes.
Global warming may be cutting into Vermont’s infamous endless winter, but the high elevation and technological snowmaking ensure that Killington skiing will continue for many years to come.